# The Relation between Two Present Value Formulae

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1 James Ciecka, Gary Skoog, and Gerald Martin The Relation between Two Present Value Formulae. Journal of Legal Economics 15(): pp The Relation between Two Present Value Formulae James E. Ciecka, Gary R. Skoog, and Gerald D. Martin * David Jones recently raised an interesting question on a forensic LISTSERV. He observed that a hand-held calculator returned \$4.684 for the present value of an ordinary annuity of \$1 for 4.5 years when evaluated at a discount rate of.0. However, the present value of annual payments of \$1 for 4.0 years is \$ ; and the present value of a final payment of \$.50 in 4.5 years is a total of \$ The difference between \$4.684 and \$ is small, but the question is why the two present values differ. In general notation, the Jones question could be phrased as follows: Let n be an integer number of years, i denotes the discount rate (assumed to be greater than zero and less than or equal to one), and let 0< < 1denote a fraction of a year and the amount of the payment made in the fractional year. In Jones s question, n = 4, =.5, n + = 4.5, and i =.0. A hand-held calculator computes (1) ( n+ ) (1 / i)[1 ] as distinct from () (1 / i)[1 ] +. n+ This note investigates the relation between formulae (1) and (). * Ciecka: Professor of Economics, Department of Economics, DePaul University, Chicago, IL. Skoog: Legal Econometrics, Inc., & Professor of Economics, Department of Economics, DePaul University, Chicago, IL. Martin: Professor Emeritus, Department of Finance, California State University, Fresno, CA. Ciecka, Skoog, and Martin: The Relation between Two Present Value Formulae 61

2 First, we observe, 1 (3) 1 + i>. From inequality (3), we have (4a) 1 + i> repeating (3) (4b) + i > 1 rearranging (4a) (4c) (1 ) n + n+ + i + i> 1 adding (1 i) n + + to both sides of (4b) n+ n n+ ( n+ ) (4d) [1 ] + i> [1 ] regrouping (4c) (4e) n ( n+ ) (1 / i)[1 ] + > (1 / i)[1 ] n+ multiplying (4d) by i 1 ( + ) Since the left side of (4e) is formula () and the right side is formula (1), we have established that formula () exceeds formula (1) for 0< < 1, 0< i 1, and positive integer values n as exemplified in the Jones question. The difference between formulae (1) and () can be approximated by expanding formulae (1) and () with the general binomial theorem. 1 This can be seen from the expansion of using the general binomial theorem which gives: 3 = 1 + i+ (1/ ) ( 1) i + (1/ 6) ( 1)( ) i +K., noting that the third term in the expansion is negative and the fourth is positive but smaller than the absolute value of the third term. Successive pairs of terms follow the same pattern. Therefore, = 1+ i+ [a negative amount], and 1 + i>. See Appendix 1 for this result. Journal of Legal Economics 6 Volume 15, Number, April 009, pp

3 (5) 1 (1 ) i n For example, in the Jones formulation, (5) evaluates to 1 (1 ) 1.5(1.5) (5a) i (.0).0031 n 4 = = (1 +.0) where the actual difference is.006 = The difference between formulae (1) and () is small (especially for net discount rates used in forensic work), but () does exceed (1). Formula (1) can be viewed as an extension of the formula for an annuity immediate but with a non-integer term rather than an integer term. One might think of it as equivalent to a level annuity paid at points in time n + ( ) 3( ) ( 1)( ), n +, n +,, n + n + K [i.e., at equal intervals n+ 1 n+ 1 n+ 1 n+ 1 of ( n + )/( n + 1) ]. We can then find the periodic payment that would be just sufficient to make the present value of payments equal to the value produced by formula (1). For example, in Jones s question, payments would be made at points in time (4 +.5) 3(4 +.5) 4(4 +.5) (5)(4 +.5),,,,, which simplifies to.9, 1.8,.7, 3.6, 4.5 years into the future. A level annuity of \$ has a present value of \$4.684 as results from formula (1); and, in that sense, is equivalent to formula (1). Figure 1 is the time diagram for this annuity. Figures a and b show time diagrams using formula () and an annuity equivalent to (), both of which equal \$ Figure b shows slightly higher payments than Figure 1 at exactly the same points in time, resulting in a greater present value. This result is consistent with inequality (4e) which established that formula () produces a greater present value than formula (1). Ciecka, Skoog, and Martin: The Relation between Two Present Value Formulae 63

4 Figure 1. Present Value of Payments Equivalent to Formula 1 Present Value = \$ Figure a. Present Value of Payments Using Formula Present Value = \$ Figure b. Present Value of Payments Equivalent to Formula Present Value = \$ We can say more if we view the two objects being compared as functions of a real variable, s, defined on the positive real numbers. Using the usual notation [s] to indicate the greatest integer in s, n = [s] and s = n+ = [] s +, we have, for all positive s, from (1), PVSS( s; i) = (1/ i)[1 s ] from () [ s] ( s [ s]) PVEXACT (;) s i (1/)[1 i ] + s. The notation PVSS is chosen to reflect the present value function embedded in commercial spreadsheets, in particular, in Microsoft Excel. In fact, the Excel function is PV (, i nper, pmt, fv, type ), with nper being the number of periods our s. Additionally, pmt, the payment per period, is 1, fv (which can convert the spreadsheet to a future value calculation) is set to 0, and type, which governs whether the payments occur at the beginning or the end of periods, is set to 0 to reflect our end-of-period assumption. Thus PVSS(;) s i PV (,,1,0,0) i s. In fact, the Microsoft help screen for PV discusses nper as if it were an integer it is not Journal of Legal Economics 64 Volume 15, Number, April 009, pp

5 even clear that Microsoft gave any thought to the problem being discussed here. Now because Excel has the [s] built in as its INT(s) function, the forensic economist wishing to avoid the small error being discussed here can avoid it by creating his own user-defined function within Excel using our formula for PVEXACT. The earlier discussion showed that PVEXACT (;) s i PVSS(;) s i, with equality on the integers and inequality off the integers. Both PVEXACT (;) s i and PVSS(;) s i are continuous, monotonically increasing functions on (0, ) which agree with ( s) (1 / i)[1 ] when s takes on the value of an integer n. PVSS is infinitely differentiable and, as taking two derivatives shows, everywhere strictly concave. PVEXACT is infinitely differentiable and concave only within any interval which contains no integers. It is not differentiable at any integer, nor is it concave in any interval containing an integer. These departures or failures result from its left hand derivative being less than its right hand derivative on the integers, so that its graph may be described as being the graph of PVSS s, but with concave arcs superimposed across the intervals between consecutive integers. As s increases, these arcs disappear in the limit, as illustrated in Figure 3 for i =.04 and s = 40 years. 3 In Appendix 3 we analytically compute these left- and right-hand derivatives, and relate them to the derivative of PVSS. 3 The smooth function is PVSS. The PVEXACT function consists of a series of cusps which coincide with PVSS on the integers. We exaggerated the bend in the cusps in order to better illustrate the PVEXACT function. Ciecka, Skoog, and Martin: The Relation between Two Present Value Formulae 65

6 Figure 3. PVSS and PVEXACT Functions with i =.04 The extension of the PVSS function from the integers to the real numbers follows an old tradition in mathematics: the principle of the permanence of form. The latter idea consists in extending the fundamental laws and operations which are applicable to positive integers to ever wider collections of numbers here rational and all irrational numbers. Mathematicians who developed this argument include Peacock, in his Arithmetic and Symbolic Algebra in 184, Hankel in his Complexe Zahli'imysfeme in 1867, and Cantor, extending results to the irrationals in Now, given that a function has its values prescribed on the positive integers, there are infinitely many functions which extend these values to the real numbers. Indeed, because the function m= k bm sin( π ms) for arbitrary choices of { b m } vanishes on integer m= 1 values of s, it may be added to any extension to produce another equally valid extension. Despite the appeal of the permanence of form argument, it clearly leads to the wrong extension of the integral present value function since it does not coincide with the economically meaningful PVEXACT function. 4 College Algebra, by James Harrington Boyd, Scott, Foresman and Company:1901. Journal of Legal Economics 66 Volume 15, Number, April 009, pp

7 As soon as we allow payments at arbitrary points in time between integers, it is natural to consider payments at all points in time between the integers, i.e. to consider continuous annuities. We then have t = s rt 1 rs rt e t= s e t= 0 r r t= 0 PVCTS(;) s i e dt = = r where e = 1/ so that r is the continuously compounded rate of interest corresponding to the annually compounded interest rate of i. Multiplication of the right hand side of PVCTS by i/ i results s i 1 i in PVCTS(;) s i = = PVSS(;) s i.this gives another r i r physical interpretation of PVSS, in addition to that offered earlier as involving equal payments of 1 at intervals ( n+ )/( n+ 1) apart. Here PVSS is shown to correspond to payments of a continuous annuity of ( ri / ) < 1, where the latter inequality follows from: r r e = 1+ r+ + L = 1+ i, so that i > r.! Of course, if the continuous annuity is 1, i > r implies that PVCTS>PVSS. Now, a continuous annuity speeds up the uniform payments as much as possible away from the end of the period, so we expect that, if the payment is the same, its present value will be larger. Our definition of PVCTS attempted to correct for this acceleration as much as possible, by taking its argument, i, and adjusting it downward to r. Ciecka, Skoog, and Martin: The Relation between Two Present Value Formulae 67

8 Appendix 1 The difference between formula () and (1) is (A1) (A) (A3) ( n+ ) (1 / i)[1 ] + (1 / i)[1 ] n+ ( n+ ) ( n+ ) (1/ i)[1 (1 i) i(1 i) 1 (1 i) ] = ( n+ ) ( n+ ) (1 / i)[(1 i) i(1 i) (1 i) ] = = (A4) (1/ i) [ + i 1] = (A5) (1/ i) [ 1] = (A6) ( 1) i + i i+ i + + i = n (1/ )(1 ) {[1...](1 ) 1} (A7) n ( + 1) ( + 1) 3 (1 / i) {1 + i i i + i + i } (A8) (A9) (A10) n ( + 1) (1 / )(1 ) [ ] i + i i + i = i + i + i (1 / i) [ ] = + i [ ] = (A11) 1 (1 ) i n repeating text formula (5) Steps (A)-(A5) rearrange (A1). (A6) uses the general binomial theorem. (A7) is a rearrangement of (A6). Terms involving i 3 and higher order terms in i are dropped in (A8). Steps (A9)-(A11) simplify (A8). We note that (A11) approaches zero as approaches either zero or one (i.e., the term of the annuity approaches integer Journal of Legal Economics 68 Volume 15, Number, April 009, pp

9 values of n or n + 1). Also, (A11) approaches zero as n approaches infinity and as i approaches zero. Ciecka, Skoog, and Martin: The Relation between Two Present Value Formulae 69

10 Appendix This note, along with Appendix 1, has provided the general notation to explain why there is a difference in the present value depending upon whether one is using a calculator, the Excel PVSS function, or making the calculations year by year in a spreadsheet. David Jones, in his query, posed a simple data set consisting of a 4.5 year time period, a % interest rate, and a constant \$1.00 per year payout for 4 years followed by one payment of \$0.50 at year 4.5. He thereby eliminated the need to consider any growth rate in the payout. However, one could easily envision the % interest rate as being a Net Discount Rate (NDR) which many economists use to calculate present value and in which the growth rate and interest rate are combined so that the growth rate can be assumed to be 0%. The Table in Appendix has been included so that the reader can visualize the difference as seen by Jones when he made the calculations and posed his question. These are the same variables as used in the general notation discussion in this note. The first section of the Table contains the variables entered into a handheld calculator. Using the variables listed in the preceding paragraph, the calculator yields a present value of \$ This was verified by using three calculators by three different manufacturers to insure that all are using the same formula. That formula is provided in the first section of the Table. In the second section of the Table, the variables were entered into the PV (Present Value) function of an Excel spreadsheet (PVSS). The answer was found to be identical to that obtained using a calculator: \$ The data entry sequence is different in Excel when compared to the data entry sequence in a calculator, but the underlying formulae are the same. To see the Excel formula, enter the Help section of Excel and then type PV Function in the search box. The third and final section of the Table is a spreadsheet wherein the same variables are used to create a year by year calculation of the present value, with the value for each year calculated individually and shown in the PV column. These are then summed to arrive at a present value of \$ Each PV cell in the spreadsheet contains the formula for the present value of a lump sum, and that formula is shown above the spreadsheet. This note has established that the difference in the solutions is minor; therefore, either method could be used. As explained in the general notation discussion, this is not a constant difference and will change as the input variables change. However, we emphasize that Journal of Legal Economics 70 Volume 15, Number, April 009, pp

11 the difference will always be very small with the year by year spreadsheet solution always being slightly higher than the calculator solution or the Excel PV (PVSS) function solution. Handheld Calculator v. Excel PV Function (PVSS) v. Year by Year Calculation Using Handheld Calculator Formula =PMT*(1/i)-(1/(i*(1+i)^n)) This is the formula used in handheld calculators. Years (n) 4.5 Interest (i) % Payment/Period(PMT) \$1.00 PV \$4.684 Using Excel PV Function (PVSS) Excel PV Function =PV(D19/D3,D0*D3,D1,D,D17) Col. D Row 17 End of Period 0 Row 18 Row 19 Int.0% Row 0 n (years) 4.5 Row 1 Pmt \$1.00 Row FV \$0.00 Row 3 m (discounting periods/yr) 1 PV \$4.684 For explanation of formula see PV Function in Excel Help. Using PV Formula in Year by Year Calculation Formula for calculating the present value of a lump sum pv = fv / (1+i)^n This is the formula entered by user in each of the PV cells. n FV(\$) i PV \$ \$ \$ \$ \$ Present value = \$ Ciecka, Skoog, and Martin: The Relation between Two Present Value Formulae 71

12 Appendix 3 This appendix quantifies and proves the inequality among the derivatives (right and left) for PVEXACT (;) s i and PVSS(;) s i suggested in the text, and notes a lemma connecting the continuous and discrete interest rates which ties these together. First, the Lemma. For a given discrete interest rate i and its r continuous analogue r, related by e = we have, for i > 0, 1 r < r < 1. i Proof: Only the first inequality needs to be shown, since the second one has been established earlier. The first inequality is equivalent to i< r = r(1 + r+ r + L ). 1 r r r r But e = 1+ r+ + L = 1+ i i= r+ + L< r+ r L = r.!! (1 r) We now state the result which describes the behavior of the directional derivatives at the integers in the graph. Proposition. PVSS ( n; i) = ( r / i)( e rn ) PVEXACT ( n; i) = e r + rn PVEXACT ( n; i) = e (1 r) Before proving this, notice first that, from the lemma, PVEXACT ( n; i) < PVSS ( n; i) < PVEXACT + ( n; i). Further, all derivatives are positive, and all go to zero with increasing n. The proof is computation. The first derivative is easiest: s rs PVSS(;) s i (1/)[1 i (1 i) = + ] = (1/)[1 i e ]. rs Clearly PVSS (;) s i = ( r /)[ i e ] = ( r /) i 1 that on the integers, for arbitrary n, rn PVSS ( n; i) = ( r / i)[ e ] = ( r / i) 1 n. s everywhere, so Journal of Legal Economics 7 Volume 15, Number, April 009, pp

13 More difficult are the right hand and left hand derivatives (note the + and subscripts) at an integer n, given by definition as PVEXACT ( n + ; i) PVEXACT ( n; i) PVEXACT + ( n; i) lim 0 PVEXACT ( n; i) = lim 0 lim 0 PVEXACT ( n + ; i) PVEXACT ( n; i) PVEXACT ( n ; i) PVEXACT ( n; i) Starting with the easier PVEXACT + ( n; i), forming the numerator in its limit involves the next two terms: [ n+ ] ( n+ [ n+ ]) PVEXACT ( n + ; i) (1/ i)[1 ] + n+ = (1 / i)[1 ] + n+ [ n] ( n [ n]) PVEXACT ( n; i) (1/ i)[1 ] + = (1/ i)[1 ] n 1 1 r r PVEXACT + ( n; i) lim = = e > e n+ n 0 i = PVSS ( n; i) r Finally, the more difficult left limit: [ n ] ( n [ n ]) PVEXACT ( n ; i) (1/ i)[1 ] + n ( n 1) = (1 / i)[1 ] + n ( n 1) n r( n 1) r( n ) = (1 / i)[1 e ] + e (1 ) and ( n) ( n [ n]) rn PVEXACT ( n; i) (1/ i)[1 ] + = (1/ i)[1 e ] n where [ n ] = n 1. Ciecka, Skoog, and Martin: The Relation between Two Present Value Formulae 73

14 PVEXACT ( n; i) = lim 0 lim 0 r( n 1) r( n ) rn (1 / i)[1 e ] + e (1 ) (1 / i)[1 e ] + rn r( n 1) r( n ) (1 / i)[ e e ] e (1 ) r r( n ) rn (1 e ) e (1 ) = lim (1 / ie ) + 0 r rn r rn ( e 1) e e rn r = lim (1 / ) e + e e 0 i r 1 e = lim e + e e 0 r 1 e = e lim e lime rn = e (1 r) rn rn r rn rn r Of the seven equalities, the first substitutes the definition of left hand derivative and uses the fact that for [ n ] = n 1,for > 0, the second cancels 1 i terms, the third factors out rn e, the fourth regroups and re-distributes, the fifth uses the previously noted r continuous interest/discrete interest equality e = 1 + i in the form ( r e 1) = 1, the sixth groups two terms which individually i would go to infinity, and the seventh uses the observation that 3 1 (1 ( ) ( ) 1 r )! r r r e L = 3! = r+ o( ) where o( ) m eans that the terms divided by the argument go to 0 faster than (L Hospital s Rule would work as well). Journal of Legal Economics 74 Volume 15, Number, April 009, pp

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